I really don’t know what to say, it’s that kind of a moment. I mean, I think things are at such a distressed point socially in relation to poetry that it’s getting hard to be serious. Any hetero man who attempts to talk seriously about aesthetics runs the risk of sounding unintentionally campy. But then again, I kind of like that effect, being an admirer of gay culture, and I hope anyone who reads my writing will take my awareness of this into consideration.
But it’s also interesting to me to see how a lot of hetero men (or men who “perform” hetero in public) attempt to deflect the “unintentional camp” effect in their own writings by:
1) a feigned, offhanded weariness (“oh, that’s just that sfumato thing again”)
2) a kind of adolescent humor that incorporates the grotesque
3) a quite astonishing doggedness that amounts to a kind of idolatry
4) a discussion of poets as if they were Nascar drivers, sports teams, or rock bands, since there is an established way of talking about these things that doesn’t threaten anyone’s masculinity
It’s already becoming a silly discussion, though you get the idea. But Tim, you might say, whose writing do these abstract examples refer to? A number of people. But Tim, are you talking about ME? Interesting how reading weblogs brings out the narcissist in all of us. I'm talking about the social milieu in which I find myself, which is a pretty wide category. In that sense, I assure you it's nothing personal.
I guess I'm also sorta trying to make the point here that certain "slacker" modes of talking about poetry that pose as irreverent or audacious are in actuality not very risque at all.
Let’s not even get started on the idea of what a TG identity might consist of, like one who is set on bottling and selling it as a type of perfume. But suffice to say that this is one of the areas in which such issues hover, for me at least.
So I’ll see you next time, kids, and in the intervening period I’ll consider the profound implications of a poetics that elides both grossness and flippancy into a deeply Emersonian, proto-Marxist critique of your Mom.